Confederate monument toppled by hurricane after officials had just voted to keep it

LAKE CHARLES, La. — A controversial Confederate monument in Lake Charles, Louisiana was destroyed by Hurricane Laura, less than a month after a vote to keep it had passed.

The South’s Defenders monument had stood since 1915 outside a courthouse in Lake Charles, Louisiana, until the Category 4 hurricane struck early Thursday.

Local authorities had just voted 10-4 this month to keep it in place after some criticized the statue.

Critics had called it a symbol of racism that glorifies slavery. But a Calcasieu Parish official said they asked for public comments, and got 878 written responses against relocating the monument, and only 67 in favor of moving it.

Now the pedestal is empty, and the Confederate statue is in pieces on the ground.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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